ACR Appropriateness Criteria(®) induction and adjuvant therapy for N2 non-small-cell lung cancer

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American journal of clinical oncology : the official publication of the American Radium Society


The integration of chemotherapy, radiation therapy (RT), and surgery in the management of patients with stage IIIA (N2) non-small-cell lung carcinoma is challenging. The American College of Radiology (ACR) Appropriateness Criteria Lung Cancer Panel was charged to update management recommendations for this clinical scenario. The Appropriateness Criteria are evidence-based guidelines for specific clinical conditions that are reviewed every 3 years by a multidisciplinary expert panel. The guideline development and review include an extensive analysis of current medical literature from peer-reviewed journals and the application of a well-established consensus methodology (modified Delphi) to rate the appropriateness of imaging and treatment procedures by the panel. In those instances where evidence is lacking or not definitive, expert opinion may be used to recommend imaging or treatment. There is limited level I evidence to guide patient selection for induction, postoperative RT (PORT), or definitive RT. Literature interpretation is complicated by inconsistent diagnostic procedures for N2 disease, disease heterogeneity, and pooled analysis with other stages. PORT is an appropriate therapy following adjuvant chemotherapy in patients with incidental pN2 disease. In patients with clinical N2 disease who are potential candidates for a lobectomy, both definitive and induction concurrent chemotherapy/RT are appropriate treatments. In N2 patients who require a pneumonectomy, definitive concurrent chemotherapy/RT is most appropriate although induction concurrent chemotherapy/RT may be considered in expert hands. Induction chemotherapy followed by surgery +/- PORT may also be an option in N2 patients. For preoperative RT and PORT, 3-dimensional conformal techniques and intensity-modulated RT are most appropriate.

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Antineoplastic Agents; Carcinoma, Non-Small-Cell Lung; Chemotherapy, Adjuvant; Combined Modality Therapy; Humans; Lung Neoplasms; Pneumonectomy; Radiotherapy, Adjuvant

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